Nivolumab plus ipilimumab versus sunitinib in previously untreated advanced renal-cell carcinoma: analysis of Japanese patients in CheckMate 214 with extended follow-up

Yoshihiko Tomita, Tsunenori Kondo, Go Kimura, Takamitsu Inoue, Yoshiaki Wakumoto, Masahiro Yao, Takayuki Sugiyama, Mototsugu Oya, Yasuhisa Fujii, Wataru Obara, Robert J. Motzer, Hirotsugu Uemura

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BACKGROUND: Nivolumab plus ipilimumab (NIVO+IPI) demonstrated superior efficacy over sunitinib (SUN) for previously untreated advanced renal cell carcinoma (aRCC) in CheckMate 214, with a manageable safety profile. We report efficacy and safety with extended follow-up amongst Japanese patients. METHODS: CheckMate 214 patients received NIVO (3 mg/kg) plus IPI (1 mg/kg) every 3 weeks for four doses, then NIVO (3 mg/kg) every 2 weeks; or SUN (50 mg) once daily for 4 weeks (6-week cycle). This subgroup analysis assessed overall survival (OS), objective response rate (ORR) and progression-free survival (PFS) per investigator in International Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Database Consortium (IMDC) intermediate/poor-risk and intent-to-treat (ITT) patients and safety (ITT patients). RESULTS: Of 550 and 546 patients randomized to NIVO+IPI and SUN, 38 and 34, respectively, were Japanese. Of these, 31 (NIVO+IPI) and 29 (SUN) patients were IMDC intermediate/poor-risk. In IMDC intermediate/poor-risk patients with 30 months' minimum follow-up, there was a delayed trend in OS benefit with NIVO+IPI (hazard ratio [HR] 0.56; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.19-1.59; P = 0.2670), and 24-month OS probability favoured NIVO+IPI (84%) versus SUN (76%). The ORR was 39% with NIVO+IPI and 31% with SUN (P = 0.6968). PFS was similar in both treatment arms (HR 1.17; 95% CI: 0.62-2.20; P = 0.6220). Efficacy in ITT patients was similar to IMDC intermediate/poor-risk patients. Grade 3-4 treatment-related adverse event incidence was lower with NIVO+IPI versus SUN (58 versus 91%). CONCLUSIONS: Japanese patients with untreated aRCC in the NIVO+IPI arm had a numerically higher ORR and improved safety profile versus patients in the SUN arm. A delayed OS benefit appears to be emerging with NIVO+IPI. Longer follow-up is needed. identifier: NCT02231749.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-19
Number of pages8
JournalJapanese journal of clinical oncology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Jan 24



  • advanced renal cell carcinoma
  • first-line treatment
  • ipilimumab
  • Japanese
  • nivolumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research

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